The Things I Didn’t Say Before

I am again on tenterhooks today, like many others. I even saw a think piece about how this election is a little traumatic for those who thought Clinton would win and woke up in a nightmare world 2 years ago.HCTVBlueArrowHashtag

Obviously, I haven’t written here as regularly in the past 2 years as I did before. Much of it has just been the frustration I’ve often expressed: been there, ranted that. The same breast cancer culture shit keeps happening, why bother write a new post when I have an old one I can just re-share? I mean, really! But I’ll admit a large chunk of my silence on this here blog has been my inability to keep politics out of my writings, and the constant low-grade depression I’m in…and most of all, an inability to keep bitterness and near hatred in check.

The day after the 2016 election, the thing that upset the most was how deeply conservative my region had voted. It made me glare at people in the grocery store—because all I could think was, “YOU! YOU are the one who thinks it is OK for cancer patients to go bankrupt and die because you hate the ACA”. I hated everyone around me. I’m not sure I’ve admitted that on this blog before, but it’s true.

I’d like to say I’ve grown, calmed down, but I have not. I got involved in a few groups, but now am really only still involved with my local Indivisible group. Because I work far from where I live (and vote), I handle social media aspects rather than the in-person actions our group takes on. So that means I live in the sewage of political Twitter more than I’d care to. Yes, I could choose not to—but I want to “do something”, so I do the thing I can do. I admit it has not been great for my mental health. Right after the election I was involved in airy fairy things like bridging divides, trying to have meaningful conversations with those whose views differed from mine. I no longer care. I’m simply not interested in wasting time with “agree to disagree” conversations. I’d even say I’ve been pushed more to the left than I was before—not by exposure to the far left, but by the opposite. There is only so many times “libtard” and “snowflake” can be lobbed at a person—it takes a toll.

Look, I hate the division in our country too. I hate the way the media portrays this all like it’s the SuperBowl or something—this is not a game, it is my life and pursuit of happiness. Well, look at that, I found one thing I can agree with Trump rally attendees on: CNN does indeed suck! But I cannot find common ground with someone who thinks so much of what has happened is permissible (not even going to list all that stuff). I was shaken to my core checking something on the Countable app the other day—other users post their opinions on the bills Congress is voting on. Someone simply said, people with health problems should be required to pay more—full stop. It’s this weaponization of those “Did You” questions that I feared. When I first wrote that post, it was merely just a gripe, knowing that people asked me those questions because they wanted to believe they were “safe” from getting cancer—it merely had to do with fear and a sense of control. Now I know they ask those questions because if they can believe I caused my own cancer, I can be punished for it. While the ACA remains law as I write this, I can still say MOST of my fears came true since November 2 years ago. I feared this would happen. I have no desire to engage with someone who holds this view of me.

As a cancer advocate here, I’ve often thought if we only shared the truth and reality of cancer, people would begin to understand. I cannot say that drove me to write my posts—I mostly wrote for an audience that did not need persuading—this was a place for others to come and feel relief that they felt the same way and that it was OK. I understand that advocacy requires more outreach, more appealing to empathy in others. I cannot say I’ve believed in that this year. I keep trying, I keep putting things out there—to show: this is what is at stake in this election. But I don’t have much confidence in the outcome.

Ugh, this is NOT my version of Trump’s “American Carnage” speech, though it feels like it, amiright? I refuse to pay attention to exit polls or any polls—I think most people feel that burn too. I write I guess because I am trying to muster up some hope today. But as my usual curmudgeony self—I’m girding my loins too. I never again want to experience that gut punch like with cancer (you know, how it wasn’t all pink fun and games like on TV).

I’ll watch and wait today. Then I will pick myself up tomorrow and continue this particular battle (yeah yeah, I hate battle metaphors in cancer—but this voter/political activism thing, yeah, it might be a bit more war like).

I do what I can.

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Author: Cancer Curmudgeon

Oct 2010 diagnosed with Stage 3, HER2+ Breast Cancer. Completed treatment Jan 2012. Waaaaaay over pink. Applying punk rock sensibility to how I do cancer.

7 thoughts on “The Things I Didn’t Say Before”

  1. CC, I am watching and waiting right there with you. Heading out to vote soon, and I cannot wait. Like you, I live in a very conservative area, and I have had those same thoughts at the grocery store and everywhere else. For the life of me, I cannot understand that comment someone made about if you get sick, you deserve to pay more. I guess I’ll never understand the way some people think about healthcare, among other things. I am trying to remain hopeful, but my anxiety this time around is high in large part, because of those 2016 results. But it’s even more than that. There are so many intangibles on the ballot. I just hope the country rises to the occasion. I’ll think of you (and many others) as those returns come in. As you said, regardless of outcome, the work continues tomorrow. Thank you for your hard work in the political realm these past two years, and thank you for this post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have tried very hard to understand how someone could think the unhealthy should pay more–and I assume the person meant for insurance rather than for the care itself–which is a thing people get confused about. For me, it’s all tied up in our American myth that all you have to do is work hard and anything is possible–which just ignores all the things like being born into poverty, race, etc. People are very blind to their own privilege and don’t like to consider that which they might not know anything about. Talk about bubbles!
      Will be thinking of you and others tonight too. And looking at pics of kitty cats on the internet to keep myself sane. xox

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  2. Thank you for describing exactly how I’ve felt since Nov 2016. I have gone through all the stages of grief, except acceptance. Stuck in anger. I have quit trying to reason with bad people
    I hope the election makes a difference.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha, apparently the “difference” is a POV. There are some great things–for Nancy (above), their terrible governor is gone. My deep red area of a blue state (Maryland) got even redder down ballot. We have miles to go.

      Like

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